Chennai: In a bid to control the menace of substandard academic journals, the University Grants Commission (UGC) will establish Consortium for Academic and Research Ethics (CARE) that will compile a list of credible quality journals.
The existing UGC approved a list of journals will only remain valid until CARE reference list of quality journals is released.
The exiting UGC approved a list of journals is consisting of 40,000 journals across the globe. Though the list is being updated from time to time by removing predatory journals, the percentage of research articles published in poor quality journals is still high in our country.
“A problem of dubious journals has become a serious concern all over the world. The percentage of research articles published in poor quality journals is reported to be high in India, adversely affecting its image,” the UGC said in its announcement on Wednesday.
It further said that research journals in the field of science, engineering, technology and agriculture which are accepted in the scientific database like SCOPUS and Web of Science (WOS), may be considered for all academic purposes and CARE list of journals.
The primary task for the consortium is to prepare a list of journals for social sciences, humanities, language, arts, culture and Indian knowledge system.
There are complaints from researchers from various streams including social sciences and humanities that their research articles are not being published by the western journals which dominate UGC’s approved journals’ list.
“Journals published by the government, councils, national academies, scholarly societies of long standing in India and abroad may also be considered for inclusion in the ‘Care Reference List of Quality Journals’ provided they meet the required quality criteria,” the UGC said in the notification.
The Consortium of Academic Research and Ethics will also create a process for the submission of proposals by the academic institutions for the inclusion of new journals in the reference list in different disciplines. All such proposals will be critically analysed using validated protocol by the special cell at the entrusted institution and the list will be regularly updated.
A senior academician said the main issue with the social sciences and humanities is that the number of faculties is more and the research journals are less.
Some professors opined that the problem is more serious than creating a newer and newer list making tougher for publication.
“Without providing adequate support for research and data collection, the UGC is just keeping raising the bar. It would adversely impact the research output,” they warned.
“The UGC’s current list of approved journals is also too westernised and researches focusing on local issues are not getting published in those journals. The regional language journals also need to be approved in the new list for quality local researches,” they argued....